Stories and publications News Devon Carers’ Exeter Advice Fair helps those facing ‘caring costs’ Carers Rights Day is a national campaign, organised by Carers UK, that aims to highlight the many challenges unpaid carers face. This year’s theme was ‘Caring Costs’. The Devon Carers’ event provided carers with information about the services available to support them in their invaluable role. It was also able to offer immediate help by registering them for relevant services, for example, helping them to access the Carers Break Fund, referring them for Peer Support and Carers assessments and booking them onto training courses. Andy Hood, Head of Carer Services at Westbank said, “It was great to have so many unpaid carers come to our event, where they were able to access real support in what is currently an ever-worsening situation. If there are any unpaid carers who couldn’t make it along, please get in touch with our helpline team who will be able to get you the same support now.” Devon Carers is part of the Devon-wide charity Westbank Community Health and Care, based at Exminster near Exeter. The friendly team was joined at the event by a selection of other organisations including Citizens Advice Exeter, Talkworks - NHS, Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service, the Samaritans and Farming Community Network, all of whom provided vital information about their services. Carers UK commented: “Caring costs in so many ways. It could be the cost to unpaid carers’ wellbeing and ability to access health services. Sometimes it’s the financial costs associated with looking after someone – or the effects on carers’ employment options. Taking care of someone may cost carers the quality of their relationships through not being able to take time out to spend with friends and family or through changes to the relationship with those they care for. And the current cost of living crisis is being felt acutely by carers throughout the UK.” Devon Carers can be contacted for advice and information at www.devoncarers.org.uk or by calling 03456 434 435.